Wednesday, February 1, 2012

D is for Dragon

So this one is the total opposite in the timeline of the last one. This one is the furthest in the future so far. It would fit in about 4 years after Sword's Call. (Actually this is the only one that I have gone forward instead of back...no reason, just how it came out of my head)

If you read the excerpt for Dragon's Call on my Pieces of Me page, you will recognize the dragon in the short, this is the same one. So, also if you read that, you know what ultimately happens, but I hope you will enjoy it. (In the timeline, Dragon's Call is about 5 years after Sword's Call)

This one is my favorite letter so far (including the ones that are written but not posted yet).

Please enjoy! Comments encouraged!
            The great ebony wings extended as the dragon rose higher, his already shiny hide glinting in the sun. Caith watched him until she could not see the tiny rider on his back, his elfin bondmate. He rose higher and higher, becoming a speck before disappearing.
Her sharp eyes fell from the empty sky as a chilly breeze settled over her where she lay on the open mouthed cave’s ledge. The mountains of Aramour stretched out before her, the scene with its snow capped peaks beautiful, although it was a normal sight for her birthplace.
The serenity of her surroundings belied her mood.
She’d had the dream again. Her bondmate, her lifelong companion, her completion, screaming in agony. Caith couldn’t get to her. It wasn’t just a dream. It was a vision. And if the girl died, Caith’s life would be miserable. And short.
            She shifted, her wings rustling as a shudder traveled down her spine. She was young for a dragon, not having reached her twentieth turn, but she was already becoming consumed with the loneliness that only a bond with her fated being could fill. The dreams were fuel to the fire that was breaking her heart.
            Unbonded dragons weren’t supposed to feel to the extent Caith did. That just added to her curse. The foolish one. The damaged one. The disobedient one. The one who’d ignored the orders of her dam and gotten herself captured and almost killed. She would have been harvested, ripped apart for her magic by a rogue human mage and sold off for her desired properties. She was left un-whole. Scarred.
            “Caith, my heart, you’re glowering.” The tone was a mix of amusement and worry.
            She didn’t turn toward the voice of the elf wizard. She didn’t want him to see her eyes. Dragons’ multifaceted eyes whirled naturally and changed color and speed of movement with their emotions. And glowering put it mildly.
            I am not, she ventured. Ennis would know her words were false.    
            Though they were not bonded, as he was not her destined bondmate, they were almost as close as bondmates could be. He would feel the emotions behind her empty phrase; he always had.
Dragons could speak mentally to whomever they wished, even if the receiver was a human with no magic. Elves, however, were born with magic and most could hear dragons as clearly as any other being speaking aloud. Ennis was no different.
Not only that, but the elf wizard was full of magic. He’d rescued her from the human mage all those turns ago and been with her since. Her dam had rejected her going back into the nest, a combination of disobedience and physical damage. The elf wizard had kept her with him, adopting a cave in the mountains that had accommodated her growth and raised her. She was a child to him. Most of the time that was a comfort to Caith.
            Her gaze remained on the mountains as he hobbled over to her on his uneven legs, leaning heavily on his ornate cane.
            “Ah, lass,” Ennis muttered. Caith straightened her foreleg so he could release the burden of his weight from his shaky legs, but she still didn’t turn her great head as he sat.
            She wasn’t as large as the enormous black dragon she’d been watching, but Strath was their clan leader, and her sire. Caith was still growing, but would most likely never reach her sire’s sixty feet in length. She was perhaps half of that now.
            The elf wizard leaned his slight weight into her body, but his warmth didn’t comfort as it usually did. She said nothing as he patted the flesh above her damaged talon. If she’d been capable of flinching, she would have.
            “Are you unhappy with me?” The pain in his tone shouldn’t have affected her, but it did.
            No. Her answer was forceful, and she finally looked at him.
            “I realize we’re not destined—”
            I have wished many times that we were. Caith rushed her words. She needed him to feel her sincerity.
            The elf wizard’s green eyes were soft with concern, as was his expression but he was gripping the top of his cane so tightly his frail knuckles were white. His tapered ears were long and elegant despite peeking out from wind-disheveled long gray hair. He wore no hat and his navy tunic hung from shoulders that didn’t fill it out anymore. Only about four and a half feet tall, Ennis had always been on the slender side but he had only lost weight with age.
Once again, emotions she wasn’t supposed to be capable of settled over her. She couldn’t lose Ennis. She wouldn’t survive that, with or without her bond.
            I shall not leave you.
            The elf wizard’s chuckle was low, and his smile sad. “You will have to. It’s time to seek your bondmate. Your dreams have started. You cannot hide them from me, my heart.”
            It was no surprise Ennis had discovered that she’d been having dreams—visions—of her destined bond. She’d said nothing to him, but the elf wizard’s magic was powerful despite his age.
            Perhaps she is here.
            “Ah, lass. You and I both know she’s human.”
            Not of Aramour? But Caith didn’t need an answer. If her bond had been in Aramour, human or elfin, they would have been pulled together by the instinctual loneliness Caith was already suffering from. Her bondmate had to be far away. If she was human, she probably didn’t even feel the pull, the longing for Caith at all. The girl didn’t even know she was incomplete.
            Ennis sighed and leaned into her even further. “Not yet. Don’t go yet. But you will have to leave me soon enough.”
            The elf wizard’s anguish sank into her. Caith lowered her head over him. She wanted to cradle him close to her chest as if she could protect him from his own emotions, but she didn’t.
            I will come back to you always. Even if I find her, I will come back to you.
            Ennis looked up at her. The corner of his mouth lifted and he patted her foreleg next to where he sat. “That is not where I see your journey taking you.”
            Caith didn’t deny it. She couldn’t, because she agreed with him.
When they parted, it would be forever.
Her need to stay with Ennis was almost as strong as her driving push to find her bondmate.
            The elf wizard turned away, staring out at the familiar snow covered mountains. Seconds later, Caith followed his gaze. They didn’t speak. But she didn’t need to tell him she wouldn’t leave him…yet.
          
All rights reserved; copyright © C. A. Szarek. The text within may not be reproduced in whole or in part or distributed in any form whatsoever OR SOLD without first obtaining permission from the author.

5 comments:

  1. Love my dragon Caith...again great job Chrissy! Wow, can't wait to read E now :)

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  2. Now I'm sad ): I couldn't imagine having to choose one loved one over another. Caith seems to know what her future holds, but her love for Ennis is making it painful for her.

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  3. ... :( Can't Ennis just go with Caith? I don't want him left alone..!

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  4. I feel like crying. I haven't read about dragons since Ann McCaffrey. I can't wait!

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